First Trial Mombasa-Malaba Freight Train Successful, Major Boost for Trade

Kenya's trade deficit widened to KSh333.4 billion in the first quarter of 2022 as imports hit a record high of 14.5 per cent

Kenya Railways says it has successfully run the first trial train with cargo from Mombasa to Malaba, providing a stable and efficient regional logistics channel for goods for the Great Lakes Region.

The cargo destined for Malaba was loaded at the Mombasa port and transported via the Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) before being transhipped onto the Metre Gauge Railway (MGR) line at the Naivasha Inland Container Depot (NICD).

“Our clients will now enjoy seamless transportation of cargo from the Port of Mombasa to Malaba and onward to the East African region in a safe, reliable and cost-effective way,” Kenya Railways Managing Director Philip Mainga said.

Mainga disclosed that the freight train has the capacity to handle 120,000 containers annually.

The Naivasha Inland Container Depot facility will handle transit cargo to Uganda, South Sudan, DR Congo, Northern Tanzania, Rwanda, and Burundi.

This will account for 30 per cent of imports and exports through the port of Mombasa.

“The cargo is on transit to Malaba Railway Yard for onward transportation to Kampala. From  Mombasa to Malaba Railway Yard, cargo will take 36 hours compared to road transport which takes 96 hours. Similarly, it will cost $860 per TEU compared to road which costs $ 2032 per TEU.”

Kenya Railways had rehabilitated the old meter-gauge line in conjunction with the Kenya Defence Force. The line stretches 216.7 kilometres has eighteen 18 stations within the network.

In December, Kenya Railways launched a 12-hour journey for passengers from Nairobi to Kisumu with a stopover in Nakuru County.

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Experience working on communication and marketing departments and in the broadcast industry. Interested in sustainable development and international relations issues.

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